Blocking out pain

Published: Sunday 15 February 1998

Many people can either ignore pain or may not notice at all. But men and women use different mechanisms for this purpose. Researchers have detected a gene for female-only system that helps reduce pain in mice. The discovery of Jeffrey Mogil and his colleagues at the Oregon Health Sciences University, Portland, USA, may someday let doctors treat pain differently in women and men. The researchers are hopeful to extract the gene that could help biochemists design pain killers for females. The medicine could also be used as pain killers for men that is normally not given to them (The Journal of Neuroscience , Vol 17, No 20).

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